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Care Being Rationed as Staff Shortages Hit Healthcare

Barbara Stewart MP
Spokesperson for Health
28 March 2014

Care Being Rationed as Staff Shortages Hit Healthcare

New Zealand First fears staff shortages are leading to the “rationing” of care in hospitals and other healthcare facilities.

“There are vacancies everywhere – we are very concerned about patient care being compromised,” says Health Spokesperson Barbara Stewart.

“Waikato District Health Board has 58 jobs listed on its website and Canterbury District Health Board has a list of 78.

“Less than a month ago more than 300 nurses working for the Southern District Health Board attended a stop-work meeting to discuss the lack of staff.

“Reports suggest there is ‘rationing of care’ in hospitals as the shortage of staff crisis worsens. Staff shortages are being accepted as normal and there is little active recruitment.

“Nurses and other healthcare employees are becoming overworked, they will become emotionally stressed as they worry about patient care and many will contemplate leaving the profession.

“Without adequate staffing, patients will not receive the standard of care that New Zealand prides itself in giving through our public health system.

“The Government is largely ignoring the plight of the healthcare sector and leaving it to struggle on – it’s time for the Minister to step up and confront the widespread issues,” says Mrs Stewart.


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